Google Play Services 4.1 Update Brings Turn-Based Multiplayer, Drive Integration And More


Google has started rolling out a new update (v4.1) for Google Play Services that brings with it a lot of new goodies for developers to play around with. This includes a new turn-based multiplayer API, preliminary Google Drive integration and more.

Google had announced Play Services back at Google I/O last year, which allows it to bring a host of new features to Android devices without pushing out an update for the OS itself. 

With its initial release, Google Play Services allowed for multiplayer games. Google is taking things to the next level with this update by adding support for turn-based multiplayer games for up to 2-8 players. Every time a player makes a move in a game, their data is uploaded to Play services and shared with other players automatically.

There is also an optional “Connecting to Play Games” transition animation during sign-in to make things look polished.

Other changes in this update include a developer preview version of the new Google Drive API for Android. Once integrated into apps, users can directly read and write files to Google Drive without the need to use the Google Drive app or website.

There are other changes to Google Mobile Ads and Google+, which are as follows -:

Google Mobile Ads

With Google Play services 4.1, the Google Mobile Ads SDK now fully supports DoubleClick for Publishers, DoubleClick Ad Exchange, and Search Ads for Mobile Apps. You can also use a new publisher-provided location API to provide Google with the location when requesting ads. Location-based ads can improve your app monetization.


An improved Google+ sharing experience makes it even easier for users to share with the right people from your app. It includes better auto-complete and suggested recipients from Gmail contacts, device contacts and people on Google+.

Lastly, Google says that this update to Play Services should improve the battery life for all users who have location reporting turned on. Hopefully, this means that the dreaded Play Services drain that many Android users have been facing since quite a few weeks, will be gone for good.

The update will be rolled out automatically to all Android devices in the next few days.